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  1. #1
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    Vista Home Basic, 2GB RAM, hiberfil.sys at 1.9GB, pagefile.sys at 2.2GB, Running Security Essentials, Glary Utilities

    We have been cruising along at less than 1/3 full on a 9 month old Hitachi hard drive. Within the last month or two the 300GB hard drive has suddenly filled to more than 2/3 and counting.The HD light seems to be continuously blinking and I have now begun to uninstall any recent programs and any suspicious processes(of which I am clueless). All of the TSR's seem to be under control, all windows programs are up to date, etc. Anyone have any thoughts? Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Get TreeSize free and see where the space has gone.

    cheers, Paul

  3. #3
    5 Star Lounger
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    There are several things you can check. The most likely culprit is System Restore - it can use up a lot of space very quickly. The other is your Recycle Bin - the default size for it is probably larger than what you need. You can change the Recycle Bin size in the Recycle Bin Properties. You can change the amount of space allocated to System Restore by looking in Computer Properties, click System Protection; note that each disk has its own protection setting so select the disk and click Configure.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by P T View Post
    Get TreeSize free and see where the space has gone.

    cheers, Paul
    Very cool. Hadn't seen this one before. Thanks.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Johnson2191 View Post
    There are several things you can check. The most likely culprit is System Restore - it can use up a lot of space very quickly. The other is your Recycle Bin - the default size for it is probably larger than what you need. You can change the Recycle Bin size in the Recycle Bin Properties. You can change the amount of space allocated to System Restore by looking in Computer Properties, click System Protection; note that each disk has its own protection setting so select the disk and click Configure.
    Thanks. That's probably why System Restore didn't want to work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lyn Grunze View Post
    Thanks. That's probably why System Restore didn't want to work.
    System Restore not working is probably a different issue. Both System Restore and the Recycle Bin set aside a certain amount of disk space. Once that space fills up, before any additional item is added, the oldest item(s) are permanently deleted to make room. So they will never use more space than their maximum, but on today's large hard drives that maximum (which is identified by a percentage, I think 10% by default) is way too much. On a 600GB hard drive they could take up 120GB of room!

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    By the way, I use WinDirStat to see where my disk space is going.

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    I had this problem on 2 computers, and checked the possible solutions listed in the replies above. Nothing worked.

    With some help (I don't remember who or where), I finally traced it to the Zone Alarm debug file. I followed the directions at:

    [url="http://forums.techguy.org/tech-tips-tricks/813020-zonealarm-tvdebug-log-file-how.html"]
    and problem solved.

    Phil

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    The only 3 times I've run into this problem personally was when:
    1) Computer was set to auto-backup or auto-image to that drive.
    2) Office/Works set to auto-backup files.
    3) Viruses.

    I'd be searching for large files, or multiple files with the same extensions (.bak, .tmp, etc), and see what program is creating them (after running a couple of anti-virus programs)

    That would be my 2 cents worth (and that's all it may be worth!).

  10. #10
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    So, just what is a good size for System Restore?

    Should you adjust the size so that it does not have any more than X weeks or X months of Restore Points.
    Just how far back should you keep Restore Points (assuming you have plenty of unused space on your hard drive).

    My System Restore is set at the max 12% and on the main C drive, that allows keeping Restore Points since the beginning of May 2010. So, is 3 months (May, June, & July 2010) worth of Restore Points too many? Do you reach a point where Restore Points X months old are just no longer usefull?

    My 1 hard drive is partitioned into 3 partitions.
    Just how do I access the System Restore for the other 2 partitions other than the main C drive?

  11. #11
    Super Moderator jwitalka's Avatar
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    You need a System Restore size large enough to go back to a pre system crash point. Personally, I think having 3 System Restore Points is sufficient. Recognize that System Restore does not protect against data loss. You need a good regular back strategy for that.

    Jerry

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    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lyn Grunze View Post
    Vista Home Basic, 2GB RAM, hiberfil.sys at 1.9GB, pagefile.sys at 2.2GB, Running Security Essentials, Glary Utilities

    We have been cruising along at less than 1/3 full on a 9 month old Hitachi hard drive. Within the last month or two the 300GB hard drive has suddenly filled to more than 2/3 and counting.The HD light seems to be continuously blinking and I have now begun to uninstall any recent programs and any suspicious processes(of which I am clueless). All of the TSR's seem to be under control, all windows programs are up to date, etc. Anyone have any thoughts? Thanks.
    It looks to me like you could have more than one thing going on here;
    An example of one such variable would be, but not exclusively...
    Windows 7 explorer doesn't portray an accurate picture of disk accumulations due to the os's built in use of "hard links".

    I have a few suggestions;
    Partition your drive and get as much personal data off as possible; Like photos and mp3's, stored documents, and downloads.
    They could easily be organized on a partition.
    Your antivirus and antimalware scans will be speedier by separating the bulk of your personal data from your os.
    Disk fragmentation will be less of an issue with a better organized hard drive partition.
    There are windows folders that can be moved to other partitions as well, like your documents folder, favorites folder, email storage, etc etc.
    If you have to use system restore (yuck), limit it to a reasonable level, like 1 or 2 restore points. 12 percent is overkill.
    And only enable it for the primary boot drive. Rely more on imaged backups once you have your primary os to a reasonable size.
    Even if your computer is a laptop and 300 GBs is all you have for drive space, an extra partition specifically for an os image will not
    significantly limit you. Even one image is better than none at all.
    Your pagefile can usually be left at the default settings, or set to a specific size point based on your needs.
    If you run your computer as in an "always on" state, hybernation can be disabled and it's associated file deleted.
    If your anything like me, I have hundreds of GBs worth of music and photos, consider getting and installing another
    internal hard drive for them. For a desktop they are very easy to purchase and install with plenty of helpful how to's throughout the internet.

    Consider your personal data and operating system as separate entities that deserve their own form of separate backup regimens;
    Your operating system for the smooth running of all your favorite applications, and your personal data for your own well being.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
    Latest Build:
    ASUS X99 Deluxe, Core i7-5960X, Corsair Hydro H100i, Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD, Corsair DOMINATOR Platinum 32GB DDR4@2666, W8.1 64 bit,
    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

  13. #13
    Bronze Lounger DrWho's Avatar
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    That's all good info ( I try to never argue with a Moderator)

    In addition, I've disabled Hybernate on all my PC's due to problems with it that seem to pop up when least expected.
    That saves you a bunch of space, right there. If you have plenty of ram, you can also limit the size of your Pagefile.
    There's even a registry tweak that loads the Windows kernel into ram on boot, for a much faster running PC.

    Restore Points can really save the day for you when something has mucked up your winders, but having Restore Points
    going back weeks or months is definitely overkill. Just like NOT having one when you need one, will ruin your day.
    I delete ALL my restore points when I do a full backup of my C drive.*
    * If you have a full backup of your OS drive, restore points become redundant.

    Then you should be getting rid of the junk that windows stores on the HD, on a regular basis. The Windows Disk Cleanup
    is a good program to start with, but running it in the "Extended Disk Cleanup" mode is far superior to the default mode. That will get rid of a lot more junk files.

    %SystemRoot%\System32\Cmd.exe /c Cleanmgr /sageset:65535 & Cleanmgr /sagerun:65535

    Just copy and paste the above blue line into a NEW Desktop Shortcut for a much enhanced Disk Cleanup.
    For all my customers, I've made this a part of a weekly Maintenance Routine.
    First time you run it, you need to put a check in the box next to every item you want it to remove. I always check everything but the Office Setup files and the Setup Log files. Those files can be important and should not be removed.

    Keeping your HD clean and lean and running smoothly isn't Rocket Science, but it does involve some dedication on your part as the owner/operator.

    I go a lot further keeping my own PC clean, but that's a topic for another day and requires, some tweaks, twiddles, some slight of hand and some Keyboard VooDoo.

    Good Luck,
    the (witch) Doctor
    Experience is truly the best teacher.

    Backup! Backup! Backup! GHOST Rocks!

  14. #14
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    I want to thank you for the tip on using 'TreeSize Free'. I run Windows XP, and watch where and what I download.
    The C Drive went from 17-18GB to almost 50GB used in a matter of days. Using TreeSize, it pointed to the culprit being
    my AV software, Kaspersky. It's fine for virus protection, but it can be a memory hog, and recently a disk space hog too.
    Windows Explorer could see the space that was used, but couldn't find the actual files.
    TreeSize spotted the problem, and let me purge the unnecessary files, freeing up over 20GB.
    Thanks for the tip on this great tool!

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